Day Twenty: Cycling with family and friends
Updated: Aug 19, 2018
Taunton to Exeter. 44.21 miles. Total: 888.94 miles
The intention of the 20th day of the trip was to ride alongside and meet up with family and friends along the way, and what a wonderful day it has been. Izzy loved seeing Emi, Beckie, Bella and Liv along the way, and riding with various members of the family was wonderful. We also had the pleasure of being joined by Julian Mack, a friend whose company organises the Deloitte Ride Across Britain. His expertise at shepherding hoards of enthusiastic cyclists safely along UK roads was invaluable as we guided our group along the lanes of Somerset and Devon. We started early from King's with a select group of six, waved off on our way by Izzy's friend Emi. The journey to Wellington was speedy and relatively flat, and we arrived at Braziers Coffee Roasters in good time. If you've never been to Braziers, you must go: a real treat of a place with wonderful coffee and a great atmosphere. Izzy was delighted to spend time laughing and chatting with Beckie and Bella, as well as seeing Mrs Hardy, her geography teacher from King's Hall, Cathy Passmore and Holley family members. The peloton grew to 13 and we progressed towards Sampford Peverell with Herbert (a.k.a. Geraint Thomas) leading the way. Both he and Henrietta, Izzy's gorgeous twin cousins cycled amazing distances during the day. Perhaps they will be the next family members to undertake JOGLE? Lunch was a wonderful affair, with all the cyclists joined by further family, friends and supporters of the ride. The afternoon ride saw a peloton with ages ranging from 9 to 71 pushing on to Willand and then negotiating a busy A road to Cullompton before heading up the hill towards Bradninch. The collective spirit and effort was impressive but in Bradninch the decision was taken to divide the group with Mack, Izzy and me heading towards Exeter Quay and the remainder heading towards Adam and Jo's. The final few miles passed Killerton and headed through Exeter to the river, before turning towards the quay where we were greeted by another of Izzy's friends, Liv. Again, this was a lovely boost to Izzy. Mum and Dad were also at the quay to meet us and we ended with a drink in The Prospect Inn, which was very much a blast from my past! Only three days to go, but rather a lot of hills I suspect.....